When it comes to senior housing options, most Michiganders know about American House Senior Living Communities. The senior living company manages 35 communities statewide, a well known brand to the aging population in the Great Lake State.

The Southfield, Mich.-based company recently announced a large expansion into Florida with the hopes of becoming one of the most recognized senior housing and care companies in the Sunshine State.

The company plans to aggressively move into Southwest Florida with the completion of four developments.

“Within the next two years, we plan to have close to 1,000 units in Southwest Florida alone,” says Dale Watchowski. “We’re building in Naples, Bonita Springs, Estero and Fort Myers.”

American House is a joint venture with Redico, a Midwestern real estate firm which Watchowski also runs as CEO.

He believes the American House business model will translate to success down South. One of the things that may work in the company’s favor is that many Michiganders migrate to Florida as they age.

“They start with a house that might be in a cluster community,” Watchowski says. “Then they move to a high-rise as they get older because they don’t want to maintain a home. Then from a highrise, they’ll go to an independent living facility usually for active adults. Then our thought is, we come in next.”

The company has three options for residents: independent living, assisted living or memory care. And unlike many Florida senior communities, there is no entrance fee to live at an American House, residents pay a monthly rent for housing and services.

“If they’re looking for a place where they can have greater services, then they can come here and get three meals a day, housekeeping, and activities,” he says.

Each resident can tailor an amenity package to his or her needs. Coconut Point, one of the communities under development, is located in Estero, Fla. and boasts amenities such as a spa, salon and café.

“What’s interesting about that is it’s located in a major mixed-use development,” Watchowski says. “The amenity there is that it’s part of this master planned community where you actually have about a million and a half square feet of retail in an outdoor mall.”

The community will have 54 independent living units, 80 assisted living and 60 memory care units, and move-in is scheduled for Fall of next year. Each American House is established near healthcare services with transportation options worked into amenity packages, Watchowski says.

“It’s our intent, and we’re speaking with some of the local healthcare systems, to establish an affiliation that will allow us to expand on those needs that our residents might have,” Watchowski says. “We want to be able to deliver those services in our facilities [in partnership with the local healthcare system].”

Lindsay Machak is an Associate Editor for Multifamily Executive. Connect with her on Twitter @LMachak.